Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) – Raul Ibanez drove in the only run of the game, as Roy Halladay and the Phillies blanked the Nationals, 1-0, in the start of a three-game series at Citizens Bank Park.
Halladay (16-8) had runners on in each of his seven innings, scattering eight hits and three walks while fanning five to win his sixth consecutive start.
Ryan Madson and Brad Lidge each hurled an inning of relief to finish off Philadelphia’s 14th shutout of the season and the club’s fifth win in six games to stay in front in the National League Wild Card race and remain 2 1/2 games behind the NL East front-running Braves.
Jason Marquis (0-6) remains winless on the year after giving up the lone run on four hits and four walks in a five-inning start, though he did lower his earned-run average by nearly three runs to 11.39.
Washington went 0-for-11 with runners in scoring position and stranded 12 to fall for the third time in four games.
Halladay gave up a bloop double to Nyjer Morgan to start the game, then walked Adam Dunn and Ryan Zimmerman with one out before getting Roger Bernadina to bounce into an inning-ending double play to get out of the jam.
A pair of two-out walks to Chase Utley and Jayson Werth cost Marquis in the third inning when Ibanez hit a bouncer down the first base line that glanced off Dunn’s glove for an RBI double.
Both teams stranded seven runners in the first four innings, and Washington left one on in each of the next two frames.
Then in the seventh, Ian Desmond reached on a one-out bunt single and Dunn worked a walk. Zimmerman, though, lined into an unorthodox double play, as Ibanez caught the frozen rope in left and threw to second to double-off Desmond, who was attempting to steal on the play and couldn’t avoid Utley’s tag to end the inning.
Bernadina greeted Madson with a single to right to begin the eighth and moved to second on Mike Morse’s groundout to second, where he was stranded after Madson struck out Ivan Rodriguez and induced a groundout to short off the bat of Adam Kennedy.
Lidge quickly retired the first two batters of the ninth, then gave up a line drive down the left-field line to Desmond that hit high off the wall for a double. The hit brought up Dunn, and Lidge fanned the slugger on a 2-2 slider to convert his seventh consecutive save and 17th of the season.
Halladay became the first pitcher this season to eclipse the 200-innings pitched mark, the fifth consecutive season he has done so. He has pitched to a 1.37 ERA during his win streak…Lidge has given up just three hits with no walks and eight strikeouts in 7 1/3 innings this month…Phillies relievers have gone 15 innings without giving up a run…Phillies shortstop Jimmy Rollins recorded his 30th consecutive stolen base attempt…Joel Peralta threw two perfect innings of relief and Doug Slaten hurled a 1-2-3 eighth for the Nationals…The Phillies have been involved in seven 1-0 contests this year, winning four…Desmond had three of Washington’s 10 hits…In the second game of this series on Saturday, the Phillies and Kyle Kendrick get their first look at Washington rookie hurler Stephen Strasburg.